Author: michaelpiggott

Gig review: Box of Ghosts and Years and Years

Last night I went to see my mate’s band, Box of Ghosts, perform at the Old Blue Last in Shoreditch, London. How to describe them? I suppose the general catch-all term for most up-and-coming bands these days is electro-pop. I think that term doesn’t do anyone any favours any more, it’s too broad.

I could talk about what they sound like: influences of Depeche Mode, Editors etc. Suffice to say they have a sort of sweeping, operatic, dramatic, punchy sound. I’m probably not doing them justice, they’re great live. Just watch the clip of their signature track ‘Silhouette’ below and judge for yourself. It’s a really well put together track. You’ll be tapping your toes without realising.

Following their set was the headline act, Years & Years. Another band that fall into the electro-pop fishing net definition. This particular night was their new single launch, ‘Emergency’. Check a clip of them performing the single.

I think perhaps they have more of a folk element to their music, slightly hard to define at least. The lead singer is interesting. A skinny guy with mad hair and a big, yet delicate, melodic voice.

Having only just heard of this band I’m going to say, for me, their signature track is probably ‘I wish I knew’. Found a nice little clip of them performing on the tube. A great sing-along track.

Anyway, if you like these bands get involved. Follow them on youtube, soundcloud, like them on Facebook – whatever it is you crazy kids do these days.

To sign off I’ve included some tracks below you might want to check out.

Parkour in Putney – the montage starts here…

A little while back I wrote a post about how I managed to sustain quite a bad injury during parkour/freerunning practice near Archway, London, UK. Well it put me out of action for about a month. Most frustrating.

Many people suggested I should perhaps try a safer sport, one where I don’t pick up quite so many injuries. Whilst I’m hardly – nor do I want to be – the Six Million Dollar Man, phrases kept floating through my head such as, ‘We can rebuild him. We have the technology.’ Simply put, I was beginning to feel a bit patchwork; a broken toe, stitches in my leg, various ankle sprains.

I then had an epiphany of sorts. Something I touched on in my previous parkour posting. The reason for my injuries was that I was trying to push myself too hard at an extreme sport without enough training. Yes, you can improve to a degree. But it becomes much, much easier if you put in the training. Obvious, but it takes me a while to grasp things. Be nice.

As a result, in the last week or so I’ve stepped up my training. So, if you happen to be in South-West London around Putney, keep an eye out for a guy with a mini backpack haring about the place. That’ll be me. You’ll most likely spot me tightrope walking along railings or attempting precision jumps off pathetically tiny walls. We all start somewhere right?

So I begin my slow and steady progress, building my strength until I can leap around like some sort of cat/monkey/man-child. Also, if you do happen to walk past and see a guy laying on the ground next to a wall screaming in agony. Again, that will be me. Have a heart and help me limp to the nearest hospital. Of course I’m joking. One hospital trip in the name of sport and fitness is more than enough, at least for a few years.

I’ll leave you with a video I found of some young lads training in and around Putney somewhere a few years ago. I’ve no idea who they are but they’re clearly better than me and at least half my age. Let’s finish with a Scooby Doo ending, damn those pesky kids!

Watch! It’s Neeson Season!

This video is fantastic. Having watched Taken, Chloe and The Grey recently, I’m a fully paid of member of the Neeson kick-ass fan club. Not sure Taken 2 is going to be any good but this video has got me fired up to find out. Great stuff!

the m0vie blog

To celebrate the release of Taken 2, the guys behind Silence! The Musical – a musical adaptation of The Silence of the Lambs – has released this rather brilliant musical compilation of Liam Neeson’s greatest moments. (Jon and Al Kaplan are also some of the best pop cultural musical minds out there – I adore 24: The Musical, a pitch-perfect musical adaptation of the second season of the show.) By the way, “Neeson season” totally needs to be a thing. Like between blockbuster season and Oscar season.

Anyway, enjoy.

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Frontier Psychiatrist

Grizzly Bear has a knack for making straight up gorgeous songs.  Fortunately, the acclaimed foursome aspires to more than penning emotional ballads to play over indie rom-com closing credits and Volkswagen commercials.  After a year of relentless touring on 2009’s much-loved Veckatimest, followed by a period of intense soul-searching and a novel experience in the studio, the stellar new album Shields, released on September 18, shows that Grizzly Bear has opted in to being a band for the long haul.

On Shields, the band members share more song-writing responsibilities than in the past, with encouraging results.  Lead singers Ed Droste and Daniel Rossen split the crooning almost evenly.  Rossen’s tinny, more anguished wail is well-matched to the assault of opener “Sleeping Ute,” which vacillates between syncopated gasps of self-discovery and yawning acceptance.  Sung by Droste, “Speak in Rounds” feels like the direct descendant of Veckatimest’s “Southern…

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Pastrami Nation

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Well, it’s different.

Check out some new pictures from the upcoming Lone Ranger, which have been made available by USA Today. Armie Hammer stars as the icon of justice himself, The Long Ranger, while Johnny Depp takes on the role as the Native American Tonto. So…what do you think of it so far?

The Lone Ranger opens on July 3rd, 2013.

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